LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (AP) - A national group of state
transportation officials says Congress needs to appropriate $600
billion to fix and upgrade the nation's highways, particularly in
The American Association of State Highway and Transportation
Officials released a report in Little Rock, Ark., and in Wichita,
Kan., on Monday saying truck freight will greatly expand in the
coming years. The group says the country needs strong rural roads
to get goods to market and to get supplies to farms and factories.
The group says rural highway improvement is also important for
safety, considering rural roads have three times more fatal crashes
than urban highway.
Legislation that has given states federal money for highway work
is to expire Dec. 31. Association director John Horsley said that,
in the short term, Congress needs to extend the funding at present
levels until a new bill can be crafted. Horsley and other speakers
said $600 billion would be enough to expand roads' capacity and
make them safer.